Special administration at Dunghutti ends

The Registrar of Indigenous Corporations, Anthony Beven, has announced the end of the special administration of Dunghutti Elders Council (Aboriginal Corporation) RNTBC.

The corporation, located in Kempsey, New South Wales, has been significantly reformed over the past six months by special administrators appointed by the Registrar. Control of the corporation has now been handed back to its members and a new board of directors.

The corporation was placed under special administration on 2 September 2011 after concerns about the use of native title compensation funds, excessive legal costs and payments to directors, and the failure to admit some Dunghutti people as members of the corporation.

'The special administrators have worked closely with my office to protect the native title compensation funds held by the corporation on behalf of all Dunghutti people,' Mr Beven said. ‘Those funds can now be used to benefit the Dunghutti people.'

The major achievements of the special administration include:

  • reducing the use of the native title compensation funds for salaries, allowances and gifts, and unnecessary legal costs
  • implementing a simpler and more transparent membership assessment process
  • increasing the number of members from 292 to 399
  • recovering unspent trust monies from the corporation's lawyer and reinvesting the funds
  • approving a new rule book to strengthen the governance of the corporation and its management of native title rights and interests.

The new directors appointed to lead the corporation are Betty Champion, Elizabeth Cohen, Andrea Douglas, Robert Mumbler, William O'Brien, Esther Quinlin and Heather Ritchie (Anderson). The directors have appointed Andrea Douglas as the chairperson of the corporation.

'ORIC will provide corporate governance training in Kempsey in the next few weeks and I am pleased to see that all of the new directors have signalled their intention to attend,' Mr Beven said. ‘The corporation now truly represents all of the Dunghutti people and is well placed to manage their native title rights and interests.'

2 March 2012

Media contact
Patricia Gibson (02) 6146 4743
Ref: ORIC MR1112-23